Psalm 34:4-5 - The Verses Project

Bible Psalm 34:4-5

Posted August 05, 2015

[4] I sought the LORD, and he answered me
and delivered me from all my fears.
[5] Those who look to him are radiant,
and their faces shall never be ashamed.

In Psalm 34:1-3, David begins by blessing, praising, and boasting in God and proceeds to invite others to join him in that worship. In these two verses that follow, David grounds his response of worship to God by remembering a particular situation where God delivered him and then extends the same promise to a broader audience.

David’s Deliverance

As each of us encounters trouble and difficulty in life, we all seek something or someone to save or rescue us or provide relief. What are your greatest fears? When you experience those fears, to whom or what do you run to? What do you look to or seek out to deliver you? David remembers that as he encountered trouble, he sought the Lord. Not only did he seek the Lord, but the Lord didn’t let him down. It says that the Lord both answered him and delivered him from all his fears. What were David’s fears? Perhaps that he was all alone, that God wouldn’t hear him, that he was rejected. In this case, David’s fears were put to rest. He was not alone, but rather was known, heard, and loved. David was the needy one, and God was the delivering One.

Our Radiance

Verse 5 reminds us that this account of David’s rescue wasn’t an anomaly or a one-off. David’s story is our story! Just as David cried out and God answered, so we’re promised the same. Often we think of people in the Bible as exceptions instead of examples. “Well, that was David… He was a man after God’s own heart. That’s not me.” This simply isn’t the case! The God who intervened and acted out on behalf of his son David is the God who acts on behalf of all his children! This seeking here is described as a “looking to God”. It’s the gaze of faith lifting its eyes from any other thing we’re seeking refuge in that ultimately will let us down and setting our gaze on God Himself, our true Deliverer.

In the New Testament, we find that true and ultimate deliverance comes from looking toward God’s provision for us in His Son. God knew our sad state apart from Him and sent us Jesus who lived a perfect life in our stead, died the very death each of us deserved, was raised in power three days later, and now sits enthroned at the right hand of the Father! We are to look over and over, again and again, toward Him. Charles Spurgeon commented, “What a means of blessing one look at the Lord may be! There is life, light, liberty, love, everything in fact, in a look at the crucified One. Never did a sore heart look in vain to the good Physician; never a dying soul turned its darkening eye to the brazen serpent to find its virtue gone. And their faces were not ashamed. Their faces were covered with joy but not with blushes. He who trusts in God has no need to be ashamed of his confidence, time and eternity will both justify his reliance.”

Apart from Christ, ours would be but a dark shame. Dark because the light of God did not meet us; shame because we have none to pay for our sins. However, what’s the promise of God toward those who look to Jesus? Unashamed radiance. Why radiant? Because God has heard our cries and has sent to our aid Jesus, the Light of the world! Why unashamed? Because God follows through with all He’s promised to do for us in His Son. As we look to Jesus in faith, God both forgives us our sin and gives us His own Son’s righteousness. Because of Jesus, we need to no longer fear judgment or rejection or wrath! The song we’ll sing till the end of our days and into eternity will indeed be: “I sought the Lord and He answered me and delivered me from all my fears.”

Credits

Devotional by Joel Limpic.
Song by Caroline Cobb.
Production & mix by Kevin Cathey.
Artwork by Amy Fuller.